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Cal Fire Increases Staffing In Preparation For Strong Winds

SACRAMENTO – Cal Fire firefighters are preparing for the potential of extreme fire weather across many parts of California in the coming days.

The National Weather Service (NWS) is predicting gusty winds and low humidity this weekend in much of northern California. On Monday, parts of southern California could experience many of the same conditions.

The NWS is forecasting that an offshore wind event will likely set up in portions of Central California starting Sunday night. Gusty winds are expected on westward-facing slopes in the Sierra Nevada from Sunday night through Monday morning with gusts in some locations around 35-45 mph.

Locally stronger gusts as high as 55 mph are possible in the Tehachapi Mountains, especially along the slopes facing the southern San Joaquin Valley.

Also expect warmer temperatures and low relative humidity during the day on Monday, especially in areas where gusty winds occur. It is also possible trees may fall onto roadways in these areas, and motorists are warned to be alert.

“As we remember the tragic fires that occurred this time last year, they should serve as a reminder for everyone to be prepared for the unexpected. We have increased our staffing, but need the public to remain vigilant,” said Chief Ken Pimlott, Cal Fire director. “It is important to follow evacuation orders and leave early as fires move very fast under these conditions.”

Cal Fire urges everyone to exercise extreme caution when in or near the wildland or open areas to prevent sparking a fire. One Less Spark, means One Less Wildfire. A few helpful reminders and safety tips include:

  • Don’t mow or trim dry grass on windy days
  • Never pull your vehicle over in dry grass
  • Target shoot only in approved areas, use lead ammunition only, and never at metal
  • Ensure campfires are allowed, and if so, be sure to extinguish them completely
  • Report any suspicious activities to prevent arson

For more fire prevention tips and evacuation steps visit www.ReadyForWildfire.org.

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Sierra News Online

Sierra News Online